nice terrain, awkward layout

by: chorner1 - Jan 18, 2009

  • Overall Rating 3
  • Family Friendly 3
  • All-Mtn. Terrain 4
  • Terrain Park 0
  • Nightlife 0

    Pros: almost 1000 ft. vert., short but intense double blacks

    Cons: lifts are old & slow, lodge arcade-lke and hard to get to

    Recommended For: Singles

    Date Visited: Jan 1, 2009


Full review

Went on a Saturday to Sno Mountain for the first time. Took my 10 year old son. We enjoyed the long runs like Fast Track and Runaway, and the short steep runs like Boomer and White Lightning (which they bill as one of the steepest in the East). The snow-making coverage was pretty thorough, grooming was good on the main skiing surfaces, but there were a lot of rough chunks of snow on the edges of the trails. Also there are a lot of weeds sticking up through the snow on the edges of trails. There are several enticing-looking glades, but they'd need a bunch of natural snow to make these skiable.

The lodge is a big metal shed and reminds me more of a Chuck-E-Cheese's than a ski lodge. There are video games all along the walls, the food is over-priced and not that great ($23 for 2 cheeseburgers, 2 fries and 2 hot chocolates), and the worst thing is that you have to skate/push slightly uphill to get to it from the nicer terrain on the left side of the mountain. The Sno Grille looked nice but is not family-oriented.

Some more pros:
the lift staff were very helpful and friendly.
the setting is attractive and the views of Scranton and the mountains beyond are impressive (though you overlook some strip-mall areas most directly).
not too crowded for a Saturday (though we waited 15 minutes+ to buy lift tix).
fun to explore.
the Phoebe lift gets keeps you in the fun terrain in the lower half of the hill and keeps you warmer than you are at the top.

Some more cons:
The lighting is really uneven, and lights kept going off and on.
The one bottom-to-top lift (Long Haul) was not open until the evening session started, to get from bottom to top we had to take two lifts which took a long time. Also the lifts seem not in good repair, Phoebe lift was stuck for approx. 5 minutes.

Bottom line: If they have a decent amount of natural snow and you don't care too much what kind of lodge experience you have, definitely check it out. If you want to try the bumps on White Lightning and Boomer, you need to know what you're doing!

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